* What roles do hospitals play in the health care system and how are these roles changing?
* If hospitals are to optimize health gains and respond to public expectations, how should they be configured, managed, and sustained?
* What lessons emerge from experiences of changing hospital systems across Europe?
Hospitals of the future will confront difficult challenges: new patterns of disease, rapidly evolving medical technologies, ageing populations, and continuing budget constraints. This book explores the competing pressures facing policymakers across Europe as they struggle to respond to these complex challenges. It argues that hospitals, as part of a larger health system, should focus on enhancing health outcomes while also responding to public expectations. Adopting a cross-national, cross-disciplinary perspective, the study assesses recent evidence on the factors driving hospital reform and the strategies used to improve organizational performance. It reviews the evidence from eastern as well as western Europe and combines academic research with real-world policy experience. It looks at the role of hospitals in enhancing health rather than simply processing patients. The book concludes that hospitals cannot be managed in isolation from society and the wider health system, and that policymakers have a responsibility to define the broader health care goals that hospitals should strive to meet.
Hospitals in a Changing Europe synthesizes current evidence in a readable and accessible form for all practitioners, policy-makers, academics and graduate level students concerned with health reform.